The shops are full of exotic kitchen gadgets designed to make our lives easier, but do we really need them all? Or will they just get in the way and gather dust on a kitchen shelf?

Some gadgets may either revolutionize your kitchen or turn out to be a white elephant.

The sandwich toaster and deep fat fryer

The sandwich toaster is very handy for quick snacks. It melts the cheese and crusts the edges. It is highly useful when you live on your own.

On the other hand, it takes two minutes to eat and thirty minutes to clean up afterwards. Moreover, it is too hot to clean just after you have used it; you have to do it when it has cooled off.

The deep fat fryer is easier to use, because you just have to plug it in. You do not have to worry about getting the right temperature. You get better, crisper results too.

Don’t assume that a gadget will always offer the quickest and simplest solution

But the deep fat fryer is no safer than heating oil in an open pan. It takes long to clean, it is very bulky and it takes up too much space in the kitchen. And do you really want to fry your food, anyway, in this era of informed nutritional awareness?

Slow cooker and electric knife

Thanks to the slow cooker, dinner can be left on all day without fear of ruining it. It is economical to use and is also low on electricity consumption.

However, it is also inconvenient to prepare food before you leave for work. It would be better to switch on the cooker’s timer than use the slow cooker.

The electric knife saves time and effort and you can get more value by means of an electric knife when you are carving a joint of meat.

On the other hand, the electric knife is noisy and sometimes you get better results when you use a normal knife. It needs washing up, left-handed people find this type of knife difficult to use and it tends to hack the meat.

The ‘makers’

The ice cream maker is useful when little children are around. It is fun to use, but it takes far too long to make the cream.

The pasta-maker produces homemade pasta, which is far superior to the shop-bought type. However, it is more convenient to buy ready-made pasta as not everybody can afford the time and effort to make it.

With the juicer, you can get all kinds of fruit and vegetable juices – which are a very healthy option. However, you need too large a quantity of fruit or vegetables to get a good quantity of juice, and hence it is cheaper to buy cartons of juice instead.

The yoghurt-maker is economical and produces yoghurt that is different from ready-made products. However, it is easier to buy ready-made and the variety on the market is ever increasing.

The waffle-maker gives us tasty waffles, but these are too fattening, so you cannot make them so often.

Before buying

Consider these points. Does the product fit your lifestyle? Some gadgets are ideal for a family with young children. When the children start to grow up, the machines become useless.

How much space do they take? Many complain that their kitchen gadgets take up too much space. Some are very bulky and you need to think about where you are going to store them.

Cleaning is another point to consider. Which parts need to be removed for cleaning?

Are they dishwasher-friendly? And finally, are these gadgets worth using? Sometimes, it is easier to do the job by hand or buy ready-made products.

Don’t assume that a gadget will always offer the quickest and simplest solution.


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